[noun fur-ment; verb fer-ment]


verb (used with object)

verb (used without object)

to be fermented; undergo fermentation.
to seethe with agitation or excitement.

Nearby words

  1. fermat's last theorem,
  2. fermat's principle,
  3. fermat's theorem,
  4. fermat, pierre de,
  5. fermata,
  6. fermentation,
  7. fermentation alcohol,
  8. fermentation lock,
  9. fermentative,
  10. fermi

Origin of ferment

1350–1400; Middle English < Latin fermentum yeast (noun), fermentāre to cause to rise (v.); akin to barm, Latin fervēre to boil

Related forms
Can be confusedferment foment

Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for ferment

British Dictionary definitions for ferment


noun (ˈfɜːmɛnt)

any agent or substance, such as a bacterium, mould, yeast, or enzyme, that causes fermentation
another word for fermentation
commotion; unrest

verb (fəˈmɛnt)

to undergo or cause to undergo fermentation
to stir up or seethe with excitement
Derived Formsfermentable, adjectivefermentability, nounfermenter, noun

Word Origin for ferment

C15: from Latin fermentum yeast, from fervēre to seethe


See foment

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012

Word Origin and History for ferment
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

Medicine definitions for ferment




An agent, as a yeast, bacterium, mold, or enzyme, that causes fermentation.


To cause or undergo fermentation.

The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.